Head Teacher's Blog

Please keep an eye on the blog page and read the entries below to learn about what has been happening in school. 

Mrs Whales

8th December 2017

We often say that Christmas is about children which is true; it is a joy to watch the delight of a child opening presents. But Christmas is also about one child, born 2017 years ago, out of wedlock, in poverty, in an occupied country. He became a travelling teacher, told stories that are still told today, and challenged us to accept God’s love in our lives. The story of his birth, like the story of his life, is amazing. We will be telling the story in different ways in all our performances this Christmas and you and yours will be very welcome. Come and hear about the real Christmas story.  We have already been celebrating Christmas with our friends and neighbours; today we sang with our Northaw friends at St Thomas’. We do hope that you can support the Christmas tree festival this weekend.   Our school choir also sang to our friends at Coopers Croft. We are very grateful to Paul at B&L coaches who provided the minibuses to transport our children at a much-reduced rate. Thank you, B&L coaches, for your generosity. 

1st December 2017

We welcomed Pastor Matthew and his team of volunteers from Life Church to give our children a wonderful Christmas experience. We are really grateful to the team, who resourced five stations with activities related to the Christmas story. This experience gives our children the opportunity to ‘dig deeper’ into learning, especially in RE.  Rehearsals for our Christmas performance have begun. We will be taking several journeys to church next week so please make sure that your children have warm coats to wear.  As we start to open our advent calendars, let us remember about the special journey that leads us to the celebration of Jesus’ birth.  

24th November

We have enjoyed a fantastic Friday! We began the day by celebrating Dan Ruge Cope’s 80th birthday. Dan has been a Governor of our school for many years and he regularly helps us out at Church. The children presented Dan with creative birthday cards filled to the brim with birthday wishes. Mrs Flowerdew baked a marvellous cake, which was decorated in the shape of a grandfather clock.   This afternoon, the PTA gave the children a festive shopping experience in the safety of the school library. The children purchased beautiful gifts for their friends and families. These gifts will be handed over to parents during the Christmas event after school on Wednesday 13th December.   Next Friday, 1st December, will be our Christmas jumper/outfit day. Children are allowed to wear their own festive clothes in return for a Christmas item for the Christmas hamper raffle prize.  Along with our Christian value of compassion, children thought this morning about the Christian values of joy, hope and love; these are presents that everyone can give.  

17th November

Last week the children were asked to complete a prayer based on the Christian value of compassion. I have received some wonderful examples of personal prayers along with prayers that have been found through research. I have been overwhelmed by the quality and quantity of them so thank you. We have also enjoyed raising money for Children in Need by wearing spots and splodges representing our compassion for those in need. Thank you to everyone who took part and donated.  Next Friday, the PTA will be running their Christmas Craft Sale for the children. More details from the PTA will follow soon. Also, the PTA is running a ‘Christmas Decoration’ competition. The children will be asked to create their own decoration to put on our tree. The best entries from each key stage will win ‘Buster’ a cuddly puppy. Oh those Christmas bells are jingling…  

10th November

Our Poppy monitors have done a brilliant job over the last fortnight selling a range of items provided by our Royal British Legion local representative. Thank you for your support.  For those who placed orders, you will have received your Christmas Card this week, I was so impressed with the children’s artwork, the printed cards look fantastic and I am sure your family and friends will be delighted to receive such a unique card.  The 13th November is World Kindness Day which fits in well with our value of Compassion.  We think every day should be kindness day but let’s mark our calendars and each do at least one random act of kindness on Monday.  Next Friday, 17th Nov, we will be enjoying our annual Children in Need mufti day. Children  do not have to wear their school uniform on Friday but can wear anything spotty or colourful in exchange for  £1. I found some interesting history about this compassionate charity at www.bbc.co.uk/pudsey.  "Pudsey Bear became a national mascot in 1985. He was designed by Joanna Ball and she named him after the small town in Yorkshire where she lived and went to school for many years, PUDSEY. When we see Pudsey Bear we immediately think of Children in Need. This charity has grown enormously since it began and raises millions of pounds every year. Thanks to people all over the country, children in the UK and across the world have come to know real kindness and compassion, made possible by generous donations to the charity."  

3rd November

The community welcomed Reverend Chris Kilgour during a colourful induction service on Monday evening. I hope that you will all join with me in welcoming Chris, Anna and the family to Northaw - we hope they will be very happy here. We also welcomed our MP, Charles Walker OBE, to our school on Monday. Charles was very impressed with our children and our staff and he learned some rules of grammar during his visit to classes. I spoke to him earnestly about the cuts in funding and how this will impact on children’s learning resources if solutions cannot be found. He listened!  Our football team played a friendly match with the Year 6 children from Cuffley School this week. Whilst the result was not a winning one, the children were a credit to our school, smiling and behaving graciously in defeat. Well done boys! Mr Napoleon will be giving other children a chance to play in the team once new partnerships with schools are developed. Enjoy a sparkling weekend and be safe around the bonfires! 

20th October

Thank you to all of you who managed to come along to our consultations this week. It is so valuable when teachers and parents can collaborate and agree objectives for the year ahead. Thank you to everyone who completed our questionnaire; your comments are very useful and we will use them to improve our provision.  I am happy to inform you that the school council have been working towards electing a local charity for fundraising purposes this year. Following presentations in class and in worship, they have chosen Teens Unite, a charity based in Broxbourne.  We will be looking to do some simple fund raising activities over this academic year.   We are looking forward to a visit from our MP, Charles Walker OBE, on Monday 30th October. We are looking forward to sharing all of Northaw’s good news!  I hope that you and your children enjoy a restful half-term break, returning on 30th October for an exciting season of jingle bells when celebrating the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ.   

13th October 2017

Thank you to everyone who came along to our Macmillan coffee morning; we raised just over £100.  We aim to give your child(ren) the best education possible, through interesting learning in a safe and secure learning environment. We take great pride in living and learning using Christian values by demonstrating the 6Rs. Please support us by emphasising these at home. Sadly, we received yet another complaint from one of our neighbours regarding parents parking inconsiderately. As this is the 3rd complaint since we started back in September, we will be naming and shaming anyone who parks inconsiderately, anyone who does three point turns in the proximity of the school or anyone who drives dangerously putting our children at risk. Also, we respectfully request that children do not exit the car on to the road; this is obviously very dangerous. This situation can be avoided if you allow yourself enough time to park at the Two Brewers or Village hall and walk with your children to school. Thank you for your cooperation in this matter.  Next Tuesday and Wednesday we are happy to engage in parent consultations. Please make every effort to arrive in time for your allocated slot. We look forward to giving you some very positive feedback and this is an opportunity to share and celebrate the good learning achieved so far this year.  We have prepared a questionnaire based on the learning support that your child receives in school. This is for all parents and carers to contribute and we would like you to complete the form on the evening. All answers are strictly confidential and they will be used to inform our practice. Thank you.

6th October 2017

It appears that Oak class enjoyed a fabulous week away at PGL Liddington. The rain stayed away allowing them to make full use of the facilities. You can see some pictures on the Oak Class blog on the school website. I just wanted to say how smart the children are looking; shirts tucked in and buttons done up, it all makes such a good impression. It would be even better if hair could be tied back neatly with small blue bands and bows. Please save the flamboyant colourful fashion statements for the weekend!  We are looking forward to our Macmillan coffee morning next Tuesday, 10th October. Please take a few moments to bake a cake this weekend and eat a cake or two on Tuesday. This will be combined with our PTA AGM. Please come along to support both events in one go! Consultation lists will be out on Monday 9th October. Also on the evenings, we will be asking all parents and carers to complete a questionnaire about Learning Support. Please allow yourself enough time to complete this questionnaire for us as it will help us to monitor our systems and improve our practice.   

29th September 2017

Thank you all for your generous contributions of foods at our Harvest service on Monday. Our collection for the Bishop’s Harvest Appeal will be ongoing until the end of this half term so further contributions however small can be brought into the school office. Following half term, the School Council will recommend a local charity for our fundraising efforts during this academic year although we will naturally, try to continue donating some small contributions to the charities that the children love to support, such as Children in Need etc.  Well done to Thomas  F, who won the summer story competition. Thomas was presented with a £25 Tesco gift voucher from Paul (Tesco Manager at Potter’s Bar) and his team this morning.   Earlier this year some students from the sewing club took part in a nationwide participatory project called the ‘The Village Project’ run by AccessArt . The project which includes some of our pupils work,  is now being exhibited at Farfield Mill in Cumbria but will be touring the UK. Details can be found on their website https://www.accessart.org.uk   Sadly, I have to end my newsletter on a moan! We have received another complaint from one of our neighbours about parking in front of their driveway. This is very embarrassing! Please would you leave home with enough time to be able to park and walk from either the village hall or the Two Brewers; this would save so much congestion and keep our children safe.   

22nd September 2017

Thank you all so very much for supporting your children in the BRUNFAST. Thank you especially to the PTA for feeding us and keeping us topped up with hot drinks. Thank you Lord for a sunny day!  Look at these marvellous photographs of a fine September morning. Well done children!

 In our church assembly Mrs Whales told a  Native American story about The Good Wolf and The Bad Wolf. It is a tale that a Cherokee grandparent is telling his grandson The good wolf was full of joy, generosity and kindness, the bad wolf was greedy, nasty and hateful. The grandparent asked, "Which wolf do you think will win?" The child was unsure so the Grandfather told him, "The one you feed will win".  The story reflects how we can chose which qualities we can feed in ourselves.   Our prayer  Dear Lord, Help us to be generous and  Do all the good we can, By all the means we can, In all the ways we can, In all the places we can, At all the times we can, To all the people we can, As long as ever we can. Amen    Dear Parents and Carers,   Thank you all so very much for supporting your children in the BRUNFAST. Thank you especially to the PTA for feeding us and keeping us topped up with hot drinks. Thank you Lord for a sunny day!  Look at these marvellous photographs of a fine September morning. Well done children!       

Next week we start with our Harvest Festival in church on Monday (25th September). Do come along to support the Bishop’s Harvest Appeal. Please bring lots of Harvest goods, non-perishable, please. This year we would like you to donate FAIR TRADE items as the children have been learning how these products help farmers and families across the world. They cost a little more but contribute such a lot!

15th September 2017

Thank you for your attendance at our Meet the Teacher events, only the Nursery session left (Monday at 11.15 in the library). We hope that you found the information, written and oral, useful.

Today, the children enjoyed a Fruit Workshop delivered by Leanne from Histon Produce, which is the company that supplies our lunch fruit and vegetables. The children were able to sample a variety of fruits including dragon fruit.
Isabella FC and Grace H said "The lime challenge at the fruit workshop was daring and sourly sweet. It was really fun seeing everyone’s faces after" .

Leanne wrote in our comments book "What a fabulous school! Everybody was so welcoming and helpful – the children were fantastic and so well behaved, polite and respectful. It was wonderful to be in their company".

We are looking forward to our BRUNFAST on Thursday next week. Please send your orders and payment for either a bacon or sausage butty in to school by Monday, in an envelope clearly labelled with your name. Children should come to school in their PE kits wearing shorts under their joggers. They should also bring a change of shoes to wear in school after the run. We are praying for good weather!

We have a PTA meeting on Monday afternoon at 2.00pm for everyone who is interested in helping us to raise money over the next academic year. It doesn’t matter how much time you can give, just let us know how you can help us. Our aim is to raise enough money for 16 I-pads, enough for the children to share one between two in class!

On Tuesday 10th October we will be having our MacMillan coffee morning alongside our PTA AGM. If you would like to bake a cake, help on the morning or send in a donation, we will be most grateful.

Overall attendance last year was 96.34%, which is just above Ofsted recommended attendance. Well done to all. Let’s see if we can get closer to 97% this year!

8th September 2017

Welcome back!
I apologise for bombarding you with so much information this week!
We look forward to meeting with you in our Meet the Teacher events next week. You will receive lots of information regarding expectations and curriculum. A curriculum booklet, ‘Looking at Learning’ will be handed out at the meeting.
On Friday 15th September, the children will have the opportunity to take part in a ‘Fruit Workshop’ delivered by Histon Produce. (This is the company which provides our school with playtime fruit.) We have passed on children’s allergy information to the company so we hope that all the children will enjoy an informative session.
The PTA are organising the BRUNFAST for Thursday 21st September. This event will start with a family breakfast, bacon or sausage butties, and be followed, after registration, by a marathon run around the field. The number of laps required will depend on the age of the children! I do hope that you have managed to get loads of sponsors. An extra form will be sent out this week just in case you have lost yours during the summer break. The PTA will be sending out an order form for the family breakfast very soon.
Before the summer break, we asked the children to write a story about an animal. The closing date for entries is Friday 15th September. A prize of a £25 gift voucher will be given to the overall winner. If they haven’t started yet, perhaps a little story telling this weekend will prompt ideas.
We are aware that there have been some difficulties obtaining school uniform and accessories. In order to make this experience more palatable, we have arranged for a used uniform sale to take place on the day of the BRUNFAST. We are also arranging a time for Smiths to come into school and provide a ‘pop up shop’ in time for you to purchase winter uniform. We intend to make this a regular event.
This year our harvest service is on Monday 25th September at 8.50am. This is a little early as Oak class will be going on their school journey to PGL the following week and we didn’t want them to miss out. We do hope that you are able to join us.
Parent consultations this year will be before the October half term: Tuesday 17th October 3.30-6.00pm and Wednesday 18th October 4.30-7.00pm. Signing in sheets will be available nearer the time.
Please look at the diary for other school events. If you require any further information, ask Trudy!
I am looking forward to a very busy and exciting year. 

July 2017

Well we finally managed a sports’ day and the sun did shine! Thank you to all the governors who helped out on the day.

The Leavers’ Service left almost everyone in tears and became another of those lasting memories. Thank you to the PTA for serving refreshments afterwards. We wish our leavers lots of happiness for the future.

I hope that you can encourage your children to write some super stories over the holiday. Tesco has kindly offered a £25 voucher for the overall winner! As the PTA will be organising a Big Breakfast and Fun Run in September, please try to get your friends and family to sponsor the children. All children will be expected to take part, either running, skipping or walking and all children will receive a medal on completion.

Any money raised will contribute towards updating our IT equipment. Finally, on behalf of my brilliant team, I would like to thank you all for your generous wishes and gifts.
Enjoy the summer break and we will see you all on Monday 4th September.

July 2017

First of all I apologise for not informing you of the format of our Open Evening until the day before. Rightly or wrongly, I had assumed that everyone was aware of the arrangements. Anyway, we enjoyed a fabulous evening, thank you to everyone who attended and made the evening so special. The children are always pleased to show you what they have been learning.

Thank you also to the parents who organised the barbecue; this was appreciated by many and looks as though it could be a standing event! I hope that you appreciated the report reviews that were sent out to you this year prior to open evening. This is the first time we have managed this update for you so I hope that you find it useful. Thank you to the teachers who put together this second report of the year for your children.

Transition day was very successful. The children were able to meet their new teachers and enjoy time with their new friends.
We haven’t forgotten sports day. We are hoping that the weather stays fair for us next Thursday afternoon. We will not be having a picnic so we would like you all to arrive at 1.00pm for races to start at 1.15pm. 

July 2017

It’s been another busy week in school in what has been a busy term so far.
Oak class have been rehearsing their production of Cinderella Rockerfella and they performed it to the whole school this morning. Oak parents you are in for a treat when you see it this evening!

We have been creating some amazing artwork in our classes this week as part of our ‘Understanding Christianity’ project. We will be displaying these at our open evening which we hope you will come along to at 6pm on Wednesday. You will have a chance to see all the wonderful work your children have produced and may also stay to enjoy a BBQ that the PTA are hosting until 8pm. We hope to let you know how much the Summer Fair raised very soon – if you still owe pledges please give them to a PTA committee member or bring them to the school office.

We are looking forward to ‘Transition Day’ on Thursday when all our new Acorns pupils will come for a morning to get used to the school environment in preparation for starting in September. Year 6 pupils spend the day at their secondary schools – so don’t bring them to Northaw!

We have had some wonderful news that Chloe W has won a Young Gardener Award following our trip the RHS Wisley. We’re very proud of her enthusiasm and commitment to the school’s gardening club. Finally it is with some sadness to let you know that Miss Hammonds will be leaving us at the end of term. We wish her all the best in her new job. 

June 2017

The highlight of my week was the Early Years’ Assembly when a very sly old Foxy Loxy enjoyed a delicious dinner. The acting and singing was superb; the children were so confident and happy. I really loved the children’s creative jumper designs and have asked staff to show them off at Open Evening (Wednesday 12th July at 6.00pm).

We are really sorry that we couldn’t hold our Sports’ Day as planned. We intend to keep a close eye on the weather forecast and try to give you as much notice as possible for a fine afternoon of sports sometime before the end of term.

We are looking forward to the Oak Class Performance next Friday evening, the rest of the school will have the opportunity to watch the production during the week. We have also planned a thrilling week of art linked with our Understanding Christianity themes.

Final teacher assessments are currently being completed to give an overall assessment of your child’s progress this year. This information will be an update of the children’s annual reports given to you in February and will be sent home on Tuesday 11th July.

June 2017

Well done to gardening club members who won a fantastic silver prize at RHS Wisley for their Famous Five garden. Thank you to Jackie and Carol who have inspired the children, helped to create the garden and give their time generously every week.

Thank you so very much to our PTA who ran a brilliant Summer Family Fun Day on Saturday. The day was filled with sunshine, good fun and tasty food. If you still owe pledge money, please drop it in to the school office as soon as you can.

We have been busy practising for our Sports’ Day, which weather permitting, will take place next Wednesday, 28th June. It would be sensible during this spell of sunny weather to continue to apply the sun cream and make sure that your children have a hat, even if it is cloudy please.

Could you spare a few hours each week? Have you ever wanted to help out in school? We are looking for volunteers to help out in school on a regular basis. We would not allocate you to your child’s class and you may be requested to undertake a variety of tasks. If you are interested, pop in and see me over the next few weeks. 

June 2017

This week we have been grateful for the sunshine and opportunity to get out and enjoy the fresh air. Children from Oak class represented our school at Mount Grace for an athletics tournament in which our boys achieved the relay record. Willow class enjoyed a fabulous day of tennis and games yesterday at Cuffley tennis club. Today Apples and Pears and Reception classes were down on the farm and had a brilliant day with the Barleylands staff commenting on how polite the Northaw children were.

On Tuesday, we took a flying trip around the world and visited South Africa, India, Australia and Brazil. Children enjoyed a mini Olympics competition and tasted bread from different countries. It was a wonderfully colourful and joyous day. Have you practised the bhangra dancing at home yet? We also enjoyed a very exciting assembly led by some mad scientists, who thrilled the children with their dry ice experiments as well as delivering some really important water saving messages on behalf of Affinity Water.

We are looking forward to our Summer Family Fun Day tomorrow. Come along with your families and have some fun. If you can help out it is not too late to volunteer; your children really like it when you are involved. We still have some events this term in which we need PTA volunteers. Please give us a few moments of your time and share out the PTA workload. Giving a little contributes a lot!

Finally and sadly, a little moan. In the interests of safety for our families, please do not park on the yellow lines, do three point turns within the yellow line area or drive speedily outside our school. Be mindful that many of our children are very little and quite unpredictable and we would like to keep our children as safe as possible. 

June 2017

We are sorry to inform you that Miss King will be leaving our school at the end of term to take up a new post using her newly acquired skills in the therapeutic arts. We are pleased, however, to welcome Mr Crayton Napoleon who is an experienced Upper KS2 teacher and already a great favourite with the children.

Despite torrents of rain and high winds, Oak class managed to enjoy some tennis tuition at Cuffley Tennis Club. Let’s hope that Willow class get better weather next week.
Thank you to all the parents and grandparents who took part in our maths day yesterday. Teaching and learning adviser, Rachel Rayner, applauded everyone’s enthusiasm. We are grateful for some very positive comments from attendees and we are already planning some bite sized events for next year.
We have plenty to look forward to next week. Global awareness day on Tuesday will focus on creative ways to celebrate different cultures from around the world. Come into the playground at the end of the day for treat! (Weather permitting!) Acorns class and Apples and Pears class will be visiting Barleylands Farm next Friday; they are looking forward to a variety of workshops.
We hope that you are all looking forward to our summer fair on Saturday 17th June. Volunteers before, during and after the event are required to make the day a success. Every half an hour you can spare will be appreciated. Pray for sunshine.
Finally, if you like our little school, perhaps you could nominate us for a community award. Entries close on 16th June. Details can be found at http://whtcommunityawards.co.uk/category/school-of-the-year/

May 2017

Oak class enjoyed a visit to Queenswood School on Tuesday and they behaved exceptionally well. Willow class went on a Roman adventure to Verulamium and their interest, behaviour and good manners were applauded by the staff there. I took a small group of children to RHS Wisley yesterday and they were diligent and delightful! How proud we are of our children.

We would like to say a big thank you to our Gardening Club ladies, Jackie and Carol, who inspired our children and helped them to display a marvellous creative garden. The garden, based on The Famous Five, will be judged today.

Willow class assembly was a fabulous journey through time culminating in a very special message for us all- to look after our planet! Parents, grandparents and visitors expressed their kind reflections through email. If you enjoyed the ‘show’ please email us and let us know.

The PTA will be sending children home with tubes of Smarties, which they may eat. Please keep the boxes and fill them with money, silver and £1 coins would add more to the fundraising pot if you can afford to be generous! Bring them back after half term.

REMINDER: If you want to know more about how we teach maths and particularly number in school, come in to school at 9.00am on Thursday 8th June to see the operations of number being taught in class, followed by a very informative question and answer session by our link maths adviser, Rachel Rayner. Please note the morning will finish a little later than first published at 11.00am.

Finally, we would like to wish you all a happy and sunny half term. 

May 2017

What an eventful week!

Firstly, our willow tree has had to endure a severe haircut. Fissures through the trunk, caused by lack of rain resulted in one limb falling dramatically to the ground and others having to be pollarded to make the tree safe. We have been assured that the tree will flourish again.

On Wednesday and Thursday the school accounts were scrutinised by a professional auditor; I am so grateful to Mrs McHattie who led us confidently through the experience of the financial audit. It was a very positive experience and outcome. The report will be with us after half term but we do not expect any surprises.

Yesterday, Jackie Roberts from the Salvation Army visited us. She wrote, ‘The children’s behaviour was a credit to them and the school. Please thank them for listening so well and for the thoughtful questions.’ We followed up the visit in worship this morning, when I discussed the importance of ‘hats’ with the children. These included hats to keep us safe, hats as part of a uniform and hats that identify a service.

Today David Morton, Director of Education for the Diocese, visited us and enjoyed a very lively performance of the creation by children in Apples and Pears and a tour of the school.

We would like to inform you that Miss Drake will be leaving us at the end the academic year. Whilst we are very sad that Miss Drake is moving on, we have been blessed with her innovative teaching and enthusiasm this year. We have been very fortunate to appoint Miss Barker as a permanent teacher from September 2017. Some of you will remember Miss Barker from last year and we are happy to welcome her back.

Finally, next week we say farewell to Mrs Biondini, who is moving on to a new and exciting role at Chase Farm and Royal Free hospitals. We would like to thank Mrs Biondini for her contribution to our school and wish her much happiness for the future. 

May 2017

Well done to our Year 6 children who survived their week of tests and well done Year 5 who survived a week of Mrs Whales! We are really proud of you all.

I have been really impressed with the quality of writing in classes across the school this week. Acorns children have been writing fairy tales, Apples and Pears children have been describing the life cycle of a hen and Willow children have been writing some fantastic poetry. We look forward to displaying some of these around school.

Today we enjoyed our celebration assembly in which we discussed the 6Rs and how we can use these values around school. Please share them and discuss them with your children; challenge them to use them around school and to gain valuable house points. 

May 2017

Mrs Cullingford and I were talking this week about wanting children to be the best that they can be! This sometimes requires a little more effort, the use of the 6Rs and wearing a smile. I hope that next week Year 6 can show us that they are the best that they can be; we can’t ask for more than that!

I have been fortunate enough to spend a day in another Church of England school this week. The children in the school were well-behaved, responsible and caring, much like our children in our little school. They were given a question to explore:

During a test in school, you see someone copying answers from the person sitting next to him. But the cheating person is kind of big and scary. You’re not sure you want to get him into trouble by telling. He might be unkind to you later. What would Jesus do?

Perhaps you could discuss this question with your children. 

April 2017

Busy, busy, busy! We have enjoyed a fabulous week of new topics and fantastic learning opportunities. Whilst we are busy practising for the forthcoming tests, we are still enjoying a rich and varied curriculum. I enjoyed watching the children in Oak class with Sharon Gale, our artist in residence; she was inspiring the children with ‘watercolour’ techniques. I enjoyed working with children in Year 5, who were researching the properties of 3D shapes. And Kylie has returned to Acorns class, hot foot from Australia! Share your child’s learning...ask them about their favourite bits!

April 2017

I hope that you enjoyed a restful Easter break.

We are looking forward to a busy and exciting term, hopefully with plenty of sunny days. The children have really enjoyed playing on the field this week.  
We are pleased to welcome Mrs Mustafa from Chancellors School who will be teaching French in Key Stage 2. We are pleased to have such brilliant links with our local secondary schools and look forward to further liaisons in the future.  
Our new curriculum map will be available on the website very soon. It gives you a broad outline of the areas of study for each class. It’s always lovely to receive extra little snippets of new learning that the children have found out at home.  
Our Christian value for this term is ‘service’. The children have been learning how we should take pleasure in helping others and know that we are always trying our best... and with a smile!

March 2017

This week the children have enjoyed an RE week based on Holy Communion and Father Stefan was able to come into school on Wednesday for our Communion Service. Examples of children’s work will be stuck into a Big Book for you all to see. Also this week, the children enjoyed a ‘mad science’ assembly. Ask them about the experiments!

Having appreciated the warmth of the summer sunshine this week, we are looking forward to some sunny days next term. We know that it is a heavy ‘testing’ term but there many fun days to enjoy as well. Look out in the newsletter for the parent and carer events: the maths morning, the summer fair and a plethora of class assemblies. Apples and Pears have set the bar very high after their fabulous assembly this week, which focused on plants.

Northaw Primary is definitely a place when our Acorns grow into mighty Oaks!

Enjoy your Easter break! We will see you again on Wednesday 19th April-bright and early! 

March 2017

Last week I suggested that we all try to ‘give more’. I am overwhelmed by the generous support of our PTA, who this week gave their time to give our mummies more! I hope that you all enjoyed being spoilt on Thursday and that your family look after you on this Mothering Sunday.

I was really touched to receive a letter from Rose and Freya in Apples and Pears who gave a little more by saying a little less, last weekend. I am so proud of their achievements and their giving.

This week the children in Key Stage 2 enjoyed a fabulous Easter Workshop delivered by Matthew and his team from Life Church. The children learned about how Jesus felt at different times during Easter week at different stations set up around the hall- Palm Sunday, the Servant King, the Last Supper, the Garden of Gethsemane and the Resurrection.

Next Friday our Easter service will be in church at 8.45am. Each class will be showcasing a special aspect of learning that they have enjoyed this term and linking it to our Easter message. We do hope that you will be able to join us. 

March 2017

This week we have enjoyed the beautiful spring sunshine and as a result plenty of lovely playtimes. We continue to focus on the 6Rs and have spent time reflecting on not judging people by their appearance. Next week we will continue our theme of ‘giving back’ and focus on ‘giving more’. Can you give a little more of your time by listening to your children read? Can you give more thought to the friend or colleague who could do with a little help? This week we gave more to our Key Stage 2 children who enjoyed a fabulous art day with Jean Picton... go on, Google her! What a fabulous example of resilience; this lady gained her degree in art at the age of 70! There is hope for us all!

I have also enjoyed looking at all the entries for our World Book Day Competition. What creative and talented children we have here at Northaw School. 

March 2017

The children have enjoyed a marvellous creative week. There have been so many brilliant keyhole pictures that judging has been very difficult. We will announce the winners next week. Oak class have enjoyed creating fractured art with Mr Kourris who visited us from Mount Grace School and today, I watched the children in Apples and Pears create mathematical arrays out of lego bricks and paint. Some children managed calculations like 16x6 using fabulous pattern-making solutions.

School governors have been popping in all week to look at progress in maths across the school. Their observations will contribute to our school improvement planning for the next twelve months. It is important that the language of maths is consistent across the school. 

March 2017

During our Tuesday ‘Pancake Day’ assembly, we talked about Lent and recognised that some Christians try to give up luxuries for a period of 40 days-very difficult! We reminded the children that this was a good time to ‘give back for Lent’ and we talked about ways that they could help each other.

Perhaps this is also a time that we, as adults, can think about the way that we can help each other and to give back in the way of kind deeds and kind words. This reminds me of the goodness of our PTA, who this week discussed how they were going to give up their time to help the children in our school. Can you offer a little bit of your time too?

We are holding a World Book Day competition for children to complete over the weekend. Children will bring home a template of a key hole. They are to draw a picture as a clue to their favourite book BUT they mustn’t write the book’s title – we will have to guess which book they are describing from their pictures. Please make sure they put their name on the entry form though! Entries are due back on Tuesday morning please with prizes awarded to the most original ideas.

Red Nose Day is at the end of March. Your children may dress up as a superhero or a superstar or simply wear something red. I really like the idea of being Wonder Woman, but on reflection, I think that I will wear something red! Let’s give back to support children everywhere. 

February 2017

We are delighted to welcome back Ms Batts who is now fully fit and ready to take back the reins in Acorns Class. I am very thankful to the rest of the team for their excellent teaching in her absence.

Thank you to the families who attended the E-Safety Parents meeting on Wednesday. Mrs Taylor delivered a very informative presentation on how we can all keep children safer when using their electronic devices. Information will be put on the school website in due course and there are leaflets available at the office.

This year we have decided not to dress up for World Book Day, which is on 2nd March. Instead I will be running a competition for the children to enter. Details will be given out to children next Thursday.  
There is still a chance to dress up on 24th March for Red Nose Mufti Day! This year our theme is ‘heroes and stars’, so children are invited to dress as their favourite superhero or sports or super star, or they can just wear something red. A minimum £1 donation per child on the day will be sent to the Red Nose Day Appeal.

Finally, may I politely remind you that cars should not be turning around in the school car parks at the beginning and end of school. Road safety should be a priority for all of us. Please also respect our neighbours’ driveways by not blocking them. 

February 2017

Your child’s report has been sent home today. This document reports not only on your child’s progress but also offers areas for improvement, which we hope that you will help us with over the remaining part of the year.

Well done to all of our cross country runners who enjoyed representing our school last Saturday in St Albans. Thank you not only to the runners but also the parents and Miss Gibson who cheered them on.

This week is safety week in school and the children have enjoyed a variety of lessons about how to keep safe online. Mrs Taylor has sent information out throughout the week; please talk to your children about what they have learnt. You have an opportunity to catch up with the children on Wednesday 22nd February at 6.30pm, when Mrs Taylor will be informing you of the dangers your children could face, ways to keep them safe and top tips on what’s new and what’s not. Please make every effort to come along as you will be surprised about what you don’t know!

Finally, I wish you a happy and healthy half term break. Let’s hope that those nasty viruses disappear and your children come back refreshed and ready to start the new half term. Please make sure that your children get to school on time and ready to learn. Those first few minutes at the start of the day are so important; they help children’s self-esteem and confidence in learning, they are moments of preparation and they are part of our collective responsibility. 

January 2017

I hope that you are well. Unfortunately Ms Batts is really poorly and she will not be back with us before half term. I am really grateful that Mrs Howell and Mrs Stratton- Stubbs, ably supported by Mrs Glover, have continued to give the children some wonderful, creative learning experiences in Ms Batts’ absence. I have every confidence that these ladies will continue to inspire your children until Ms Batts returns.  

We enjoyed a visit from our Hertfordshire Improvement Partner yesterday, who was able to assess our safeguarding procedures as outstanding. She looked at teaching and learning across the school and confirmed that provision continues to be good. She was impressed with the Early Years environment and congratulated the staff and the children on their achievements.

Thank you to the families who have enabled their children to attend ‘booster’ and ‘intervention’ sessions. These have focused mainly on raising children’s confidence levels so that they are prepared for the next stage of their education.

We welcomed Pastor Matt and Helen from Potters Bar Life Church to worship on Wednesday. Matt talked to the children about his experiences in Brazil and Iraq and in keeping with our worship plan, told the children about the plight of refugees. We prayed for these people to have perseverance in difficult circumstances.

Finally, I would like to say well done and thank you to all of Willow class who enjoyed a wonderful singing session at Mid Herts Music Centre on Monday. Mrs Cullingford praised the children’s behaviour, which was exemplary, and their enthusiasm. I am so proud of you all. 

January 2017

I was fortunate this week to have the privilege of listening to your children sing. It was a beautiful rendition of Spirit of Peace. It talks about unlocking the door of hope which contradicts current world news items. I hope that our children grow up with the Christian values of tolerance and perseverance in making the world a better place.

We welcomed Reverend Stefan Chrysostomou from St Mary’s Church, Potters Bar to worship on Wednesday. He talked about the spiritual journey of St Paul. After Holy Communion, Reverend Stefan toured the school and said how wonderful and respectful the children were. 

January 2017

Our theme of ‘perseverance’ has been demonstrated in the classroom this week with some wonderful examples of children who have overcome challenges through hard work and by not giving up.

Underpinning this perseverance is confidence and courage. Realising that it’s not wrong to be wrong can empower learners to "try".

As educators, we have the privilege of seeing this on a daily basis yet the joy of witnessing it never dulls – possibly the most rewarding aspect of our profession.

Please continue to encourage your children to persevere at home even with simple tasks like tying their shoe laces, doing up buttons or even learning to ride a bike. Perseverance is needed throughout our lives and if we can learn it while we’re young it needn’t be an obstacle.

On Wednesday we were delighted to have a visit from Mr Croston, Head teacher at Chancellors School. It was so nice to show him around our beautiful school and introduce him to some of his future pupils!

January 2017

A happy new year to you all!

This graph shows the attendance figures for last term. Your children’s attendance has improved overall. I would like to thank all Reception, Year 4 and Year 6 children in particular, as their attendance is above the Ofsted requirements. It would be fabulous if all classes could achieve this measure this term!

Thank you also to parents and carers of Oak class who are managing the early mornings and late finishes for ‘booster’ classes. These ‘bespoke’ learning opportunities benefit all who attend.

Created by Northaw School Governing Body - copyright 2017